AWS vs Azure – Which One To Choose?

AWS vs Azure – Which One To Choose?
 21st Aug, 2019
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AWS and Microsoft Azure are the top cloud providers and have been in a constant battle, fighting for cloud dominance. In this blog on AWS vs Azure, we will explore the differences between AWS and Azure on the basis of various factors such as their establishment, market shares, pricing and more.

Following is the list of topics that we will cover in this blog:

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AWS Vs Azure: Establishment

Amazon Web Services

AWS (Amazon Web Services) was incepted in 2006 which fulfilled the enterprise need for on-demand computing platform which hosts a variety of cloud computing services. It has over 200 services to offer like application services, database, compute, deployment, management, networking, storage, mobile, management, developer tools and many more.

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Microsoft Azure

Azure launched in 2010 to provide a competent cloud computing platform for businesses. It was renamed as Microsoft Azure in 2014. It offers around 100+ services like analytics, compute, networking, storage and also on Internet of Things. Microsoft through its global network of data centers enables building, deploying, and managing applications and services.

AWS Vs Azure: Availability Zones

AWS was the first one of its kind and has been in cloud industry for the longest time than any other cloud provider. Naturally, AWS has had more time to expand its network globally. Microsoft Azure is also hosting in multiple locations but the difference occurs in the number of their respective availability zones and regions.

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  • AWS has a total of 66 availability zones and 12 more on the way
  • Azure, on the other hand, has 54 regions worldwide.

AWS Vs Azure: Pricing Models

Following table shows the comparison of the pricing models of AWS and Microsoft Azure on the basis of various machine types that they offer.

Machine TypeAWSAzure
Smallest InstanceFor the most basic machine that AWS offers, you will be charged an amount of US$69 per month. This instance includes 2 virtual CPUs and 8 GB of RAM will cost youFor the same type of instance in Azure that includes 2 vCPUs and 8 GB of RAM, you will be charged an amount of  US$70/month.
Largest InstanceFor the largest instance offered by AWS that includes 3.84 TB of RAM and 128 vCPUs, you will be charged an amount of US$3.97/hour.For the largest instance offered by Microsoft Azure that includes 3.89 TB of RAM and 128 vCPUs. It costs around US$6.79/hour.

AWS Vs Azure: Services

Let’s compare both of them on the grounds of services to see who provides what type services they offer and who has a competitive advantage over the other.

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Networking Services

Both AWS and Microsoft Azure are really very good at providing networking services. You can extend your on-premise data center into the public or hybrid cloud using both of these providers.

AWSMicrosoft Azure
If you are a business owner you can connect your Virtual Private Clouds (VPC) with your corporate data centerThrough Azure ExpressRoute or site-to-site VPN networks, users can connect VNETs to on-premise data centers.
AWS users can group VMs into isolated networks in the cloud through its VPCs and Virtual Network (VNET)You can achieve this in Microsoft through Azure Virtual Network (VNET)

Compute Services

AWSMicrosoft Azure
If you want on-demand scalable computing AWS provides you with an IaaS service called Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2). They also offer a PaaS service called Elastic Beanstalk which is key in application developmentVirtual machines which are mainly of IaaS delivery model are helpful in providing good computing power to users. To deploy highly-available, highly-scalable APIs and applications
EC2 users can select pre-configured machine images or configure their own VMs.Users can create VMs using Virtual Hard Disk (VHD) which is equivalent to Machine instance
Docker with Elastic Beanstalk can be used where one has an infrastructure that handles the details of scaling, capacity provisioning, load balancing, and application health monitoring.Docker can deeply integrate with Azure infrastructure where native infrastructure capabilities can be realized without additional configuration

Databases Services

AWSMicrosoft Azure
Managed databases like Oracle, Postgresql, MySQL, MariaDB along with SQL Server itself are available in Redshift and Amazon’s Relational Database Service (RDS)SQL Server supports relational database through Azure.
Database migration service is provided which allows customers to move to the cloud their on-premise relational dataThe transition from on- premise SQL Server to SQL Database happens with very few changes. The Azure Stack allows one to bring Azure functionality to your on-premise data centers.
For NoSQL databases, DynamoDB offers high scale, low cost document and key value storageCosmosDB is the database platform that handles throughput, scaling, consistency etc. Azure hasDocumentDB which is a highly available and high performing document base which runs on CosmosDB. MySQL can be implemented in Azure using Azure CLI.

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Storage Services

One of the many prominent features to be considered in cloud computing services is storage.

AWSMicrosoft Azure
Simple storage service (S3) is used for storage.Through blog storage, Azure offers Block Storage and Object Storage which includes storing of block blobs and page blobs
AWS has a better competitive edge in handling storage because of extensive documentation, free webinars, plethora of sample code and libraries, articles and tutorials etc. Users find it useful.To compete AWS’s EBS, persistent block storage is provided by page blobs.
Relational databases, big data and NoSQL are supported through S3Relational databases, big data and NoSQL are supported through HDInsight and Azure Table
For hybrid cloud storage AWS storage gateway is usedFor hybrid cloud storage StorSimple is used
Amazon Glacier provides backupAzure backup is used for backup

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AWS Vs Azure: Ease To Use

Amazon Web Services

  • AWS offers a host of configurations and features and it takes time to understand it.
  • AWS offers flexibility, customization room with support for many third-party integrations and a lot of power.

Microsoft Azure

  • Azure has an edge here because as the majority of people use Windows, Azure is easy to use for them.
  • A hybrid environment is possible as it is simple to integrate on-premises Windows Servers with cloud instances.

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Conclusion

AWS had started out the earliest when no other had thought storage and computing could be given on rent as a service and it would be such a huge business. Therefore it has a competitive advantage over the other cloud players because it has researched more on cloud technologies. How else do you think that AWS is able to provide more than 200 services whereas Azure provides around 100? Microsoft Azure even though it started late has an edge with Windows-based users. Those who want cloud services and are comfortable with the Windows operating system preferably choose Azure. Comparing AWS and Azure based on market share is another matter. AWS is way ahead of that its competitors. But both of them will continue to provide competent cloud services to their users. Upstarts and those with low budget for infrastructure will always find these services as a boon.

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1 thought on “AWS vs Azure – Which One To Choose?”

  1. I get the feeling thuis was written a year ago. I am missing Azure Stack onpremmis, CosmosDB, MySQL on Azure and Docker on Azure vs beanstalk.

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